I/O Psychology: Working at the basic-applied psychology interface

Comments on an article by G. Latham concerning the reciprocal transfer of learning between journals and practice. Specifically, the author addresses issues related to the theory–practice balance in journal publications from 3 perspectives. First, the author considers the question of balance in terms of evaluating a single study, and discusses an alternative framework for making a decision about how the evaluate the potential “utility” of a study to the field. Second, the broader question of balance in a journal’s content is examined. It is suggested that concerns about balance at this level, such as whether a journal is too “theory-heavy” are less determined by the journal than by the state of the field. Also, balance in terms of the personal and situational characteristics that appear to foster valued work at the basic–applied interface is investigated.